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City seeks property code compliance

Hagerstown is notifying downtown property owners they must conform to laws intended to improve the city's appearance.

Hagerstown is notifying downtown property owners they must conform to laws intended to improve the city's appearance.

March 03, 2003|by SCOTT BUTKI

scottb@herald-mail.com

In an attempt to improve the appearance of downtown Hagerstown, the city is sending letters Monday to about 60 business and property owners not in compliance with city codes, asking them to clean windows and exteriors and take down outdated signs, Hagerstown officials said Friday.

The city is sending out about 120 letters to business and property owners in the Downtown Hagerstown Business District, focusing on areas that revolve around the city's Arts and Entertainment District, said John Lestitian, chief of code compliance.

The streets involved include the first unit blocks of North Locust, South Locust, North Potomac, South Potomac, West Antietam, East Antietam, West Washington and East Potomac streets.

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The city is sending thank-you notes to 60 property owners who have been positive role models by being in full compliance with the city codes, he said.

The 60 business and property owners associated with about 40 properties not in compliance with the city's Property Maintenance Code are being sent a letter outlining the parts of the code they are not meeting and are being told their property will be inspected again in 30 days, he said. The city will work with property owners to resolve the matters.

The city's goal is to have voluntary code compliance.

Fines will not be levied until after the re-inspection date, he said. Fines are $200 for windows not cleaned, $200 for uncleaned exteriors and $50 for outdated signs.

The program's intent is to protect the investments of all downtown property owners.

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